My cousin Mary, in Wisconsin, sends me the most delightful postcards. They are worthy of The Postcard Hall of Fame.
A few weeks ago, she attended a German Fest and the card was filled with dashing dachshunds . . . one in a hilarious costume. Yesterday I received one from the Wisconsin State Fair. Alice In Dairyland, with a milk mustache of course, holds a glass of milk and stands in front of serene cows in a pasture. The sign below her?
OUTSTANDING IN HER FIELD: 63rd Alice in Dairyland: Christine Linder.
Paula, my Fresno friend, collects quirky postcards. You’ll have to wait a bit for this one, Paula, as it’s too cute to give up immediately.
So what do postcards have to do with writing? Plenty! They teach you to write tight. You have to say what you mean in a few short words. Have you ever read old postcards? Delightful! Some are so well-written you can get a wonderful sense of the time, place and character of the person writing. Others are so general they are less helpful.
1. Design a postcard from a character in the project you are working on. Write it carefully. Who is she/he sending it to? Why? Where is it from? Where is it going to?
2. Design a postcard advertising your new book. Publicity is important in the publishing process and learning to write this is a whole different genre.
3. Write a “Dear John” postcard from a character breaking up with another character. Make it funny!
4. Write a postcard from one famous person to another famous person.
5. Which character in literature do you love? Send a postcard from him or her to another character in that book.
6. Write a postcards from different time periods in history. Make sure you are able to show time, place and character in the space the postcard allows.